Once again, Univision takes a cheap shot at Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. And once again, they’ve missed. This time, the network omitted critical information as they carried a potential opponent’s water by pushing out a half-baked story over rapid tests that expired due to low demand.
Watch as anchor Patricia Janiot fretfully frames the story:
PATRICIA JANIOT: And this avalanche of cases has caused thousands of people to form long lines for Covid tests. One of the states with the highest number of cases- of infections is Florida, where it was revealed that up to 1 million rapid tests were lost because they expired in a warehouse at the end of December.
GUILLERMO GONZÁLEZ: The controversy arose because Florida’s state government admitted that about 1 million rapid Covid tests expired, apparently, due to lack of demand. At the same time, infections in the state are growing exponentially. Despite everything, some say they feel calmer now than before.
GONZALEZ: The data on new infections do not include home tests that have been distributed for free in different places throughout the state.
JANIOT: Incredible. 1 million tests that were lost…
GONZALEZ: A shame… incredible.
JANIOT:… because they expired. There are many… What does the governor say, Guillermo?
GONZÁLEZ: Well, Governor DeSantis in a press conference today- the governor said that the tests were lost due to lack of demand during the months of September, October and November. He said that those tests might have been used had the Omicron variant been discovered at the time, but that never happened.
JANIOT: It didn’t happen. Thank you for your report, Guillermo.
Correspondent Guillermo González tries to tie the expiration of the rapid tests to the current Omicron wave. But the tests didn’t initially expire in December. Per Florida Department of Health spokesman Jeremy Redfern, the rapid tests expired in SEPTEMBER. In other words, they expired as Florida came down from the late-summer Delta wave. The rapid tests were then renewed by Abbott and the FDA, and that renewal is what expired in December. None of those details made it into Univision’s disinformative report. Also omitted was the fact that the state requested another extension of these kits. The aim of the report appears to be little more than to provide Democrat gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried with a nice in-kind donation.
The record will reflect that this isn’t the first time that Univision has played dirty pool with DeSantis. Whether it’s Florida’s election integrity law, Florida’s case counts (when on the uptick), or DeSantis’ ongoing fight to keep the state running, it should be crystal clear to all that Ron DeSantis is a target of Univision’s News division.
Let this stand as your periodic reminder that the largest purveyors of Spanish-language disinformation are in fact Spanish-language corporate media. The marketplace continues to cry out for an alternative.
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